Tipping in Italy

Tipping in Italy- Italy from the Inside

Photo by Francesca Tosolini

If you leave a tip, leave it in cash. If for any reason you leave without leaving a tip, nobody will ever ask you if there was something wrong with your lunch or dinner. In Italy, tips are always well accepted, of course, but they are not a customary rule as in the States.

{This is an excerpt from chapter 3 “Italian cuisine and food establishments” of the eBook “Italy from the Inside. A native Italian reveals the secrets of traveling in Italy”}

The Italian restaurants and the art of eating. Slowly.

Italian restaurant- Italy from the Inside

Photo by Francesca Tosolini

Italians enjoy their meals in a very relaxed way, with no rush at all. As a result, the waiter will come to you only if you call him, because he/she considers it impolite to “interrupt” your meal (pasto) every few minutes to check on your status. When you are ready to go, you must ask for the check (conto), as it is never assumed by the waiter when your lunch or dinner is over. Also, always have some cash with you, because some restaurants don’t take credit cards.

{This is an excerpt from chapter 3 “Italian cuisine” of the eBook “Italy from the Inside. A native Italian reveals the secrets of traveling in Italy”}

When ten Italian women dine out…

How Italians dine out- Italy From The Inside

Imagine a group of 10 Italian women that meet after weeks of “separation”. Imagine now that they have to catch up, so they start chatting. And chatting. And chatting. Can you see the hand gestures flying in the air? Can you hear the boomings of laughter abruptly exploding? Can you see the clock on the wall? Well, apparently they don’t because at 10.30pm they suddenly realize that the restaurant is completely empty and they are the only people left in sight.

But time doesn’t scare them. They continue chatting. And chatting. And chatting. Now it’s 10 past 11pm, and one of them (a.k.a. me) decides to take a photo of the empty pizzeria, where, in the distance, you can see the notorious clock showing them that while in the States everybody is already gone, in Italy it would have barely been the time to order the dessert and maybe even a caffettino (with a shot of grappa? Si, grazie!).

But the signore keep on chatting. Some waiters start leaving, while others eat their dinner. And the clock keeps ticking. Now it’s 11:45pm and the women feel that maybe now they should really go. They feel bad for the restaurant employees who are too nice to come to their table to gently tell them: “Come on ladies, do the right thing, go home”. And so the 10 Italian women do leave, wondering if the next time one of them will call to make a reservation, the receptionist will kindly pretend that all (150) tables have already been taken…